Yes, I dragged myself out of bed at what would normally be not far from when I jump into it ... rising at 5am this morning to greet the dawn, heading out to see a merry band of Ballooner's puff up their rides and take off into the bright dawn light for a flight along the Hudson River and Valley.
The 6pm flight the night before had been cancelled due to massive thunderstorms that were buzzing about in the hot summer skies so there was a little anxiety about whether the event would turn out well. Thankfully the weather gods were smiling. Picture perfect clear skies this morning, no wind to speak of and we were treated to a full and splendid display of color and stellar "balloons-manship (and the odd ladyship too, just to be politically correct)!
It seems to be no mean feat to get these massive things airborne, requiring an injection of air propelled by way of huge fans before they start to further inflate the balloon using hot air directed into the mouth from a torch-like propane burner. Ropes abound, to tie the balloon down until it's ready to fly, to tweak and pull this and that, and there's always the ready heave-ho of the odd hundred pound (or two) human to balance things out.
Then things seem to reach that magical moment, the sweet spot where the balloon is filled, the basket is manned, passengers aboard and it just lifts off silently, magestically, into the sky.....
I hope your weekend was filled with a bit of color and sunshine too!